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Lawmaker: Ellison plans no major upset on Lanai

HONOLULU — Billionaire Larry Ellison isn't planning any radical changes for the Hawaiian island he has agreed to buy, a Hawaii state lawmaker said Thursday.

State Sen. J. Kalani English told The Associated Press he got a call from the Oracle Corp. CEO's personal representatives, and they said Ellison sees Lanai as "much more than an asset."

Ellison's reps expressed sensitivity to the "culture and conservation stewardship of the island," which is home to 3,200 residents, said English, a Democrat whose district includes Lanai.

They also assured English that union contracts will be honored and Ellison has no plans for a wind farm, even though the land's current owner, billionaire David Murdock, is retaining the right to build one. The contentious project would deliver power to Oahu through an undersea cable.

Meanwhile, Murdock's Castle & Cooke Inc. delivered letters to Lanai employees, informing them of the sale and that they'll all be retained by Ellison, with all contracts being transferred, English said.


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